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How to recognize scams like Your phone is sending SPAM!

Also Known As: Your phone is sending SPAM! pop-up
Damage level: Medium

What kind of scam is Your phone is sending SPAM!?

It is a scam that promotes questionable software (supposedly a spam blocker). Websites promoting applications using scare tactics cannot be trusted. Usually, these pages get opened through other shady websites, deceptive ads, or installed potentially unwanted applications (PUAs).

Your phone is sending SPAM! scam

Your phone is sending SPAM! pop-up scam in detail

Pop-ups displayed by this deceptive page claim that a device is infected with adware and encourage users to remove it immediately. The "Clean phone" button opens another shady website, a download page for a PUA. The app promoted through this scam is likely to be designed to generate advertisements, collect data and (or) hijack a web browser. What is worse, it could be malicious.

Threat Summary:
Name Your phone is sending SPAM! pop-up
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim A device is infected with adware
Disguise Notification from Facebook
Distributed Unwanted Apps Spam blocker
Related Domain fixdevicerrors[.]com
Detection Names (fixdevicerrors[.]com) alphaMountain.ai (Malicious), Sophos (Phishing), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Symptoms Fake error messages, fake system warnings, pop-up errors, hoax computer scan.
Distribution methods Compromised websites, rogue online pop-up ads, potentially unwanted applications.
Damage Loss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft, possible malware infections.
Malware Removal (Windows)

To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
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More about pop-up scams

Usually, scams like this one claim that a device is infected or damaged in some other way and encourage to take certain actions immediately. Also, they can be used to trick users into providing personal information, paying money for fake software, services, providing remote access to a device.

More examples of similar scams are "Windows 10 May Be In Danger", "You've Visited Illegal Infected Website", "Critical Framework Error". Pretty often, pages delivering pop-up scams are promoted through PUAs.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

PUAs are distributed (or promoted) through downloaders and installers for other programs, certain advertisements, fake installers, deceptive pages. Users download or install PUAs alongside other programs when they leave "Custom", "Advanced" or other settings available in their downloaders or installers unchanged.

Advertisements can download or install unwanted apps when they are designed to run specific scripts and users click on them. Fake installers used to distribute PUAs usually are promoted on deceptive pages.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

Download software (and files) only from legitimate/official pages. Free file hosting pages, unofficial pages, third-party downloaders, Peer-to-Peer networks, and similar sources can be used to distribute PUAs and malicious apps.

Also, do not click on advertisements that shady websites have on them and deselect unwanted applications before downloading or installing programs. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate them.

Text in the pop-up:

WARNING!

Desktop Desktop is infected with adware and is causing spam!
System has detected (1) adware virus causing serious damage to your phone. Virus must be removed immediately.

Continue with instructions to fix phone.

[OK]

The appearance of Your phone is sending SPAM!" pop-up scam (GIF):

Appearance of Your phone is sending SPAM! scam

Text in the background message:

Your phone Desktop Desktop is sending SPAM!
An Adware Virus has infected your device and is causing Spam. Your phone will be locked in 10 minutes.
To avoid your phone getting locked you need to remove virus immediately!

Tap "Clean phone", order the recommended app and install on Google Playstore.

Instant automatic malware removal: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Combo Cleaner is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
▼ DOWNLOAD Combo Cleaner By downloading any software listed on this website you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Combo Cleaner. 7 days free trial available. Combo Cleaner is owned and operated by Rcs Lt, the parent company of PCRisk.com read more.

Quick menu:

How to identify a pop-up scam?

Pop-up windows with various fake messages are a common type of lures cybercriminals use. They collect sensitive personal data, trick Internet users into calling fake tech support numbers, subscribe to useless online services, invest in shady cryptocurrency schemes, etc.

While in the majority of cases these pop-ups don't infect users' devices with malware, they can cause direct monetary loss or could result in identity theft.

Cybercriminals strive to create their rogue pop-up windows to look trustworthy, however, scams typically have the following characteristics:

  • Spelling mistakes and non-professional images - Closely inspect the information displayed in a pop-up. Spelling mistakes and unprofessional images could be a sign of a scam.
  • Sense of urgency - Countdown timer with a couple of minutes on it, asking you to enter your personal information or subscribe to some online service.
  • Statements that you won something - If you haven't participated in a lottery, online competition, etc., and you see a pop-up window stating that you won.
  • Computer or mobile device scan - A pop-up window that scans your device and informs of detected issues - is undoubtedly a scam; webpages cannot perform such actions.
  • Exclusivity - Pop-up windows stating that only you are given secret access to a financial scheme that can quickly make you rich.

Example of a pop-up scam:

Example of a pop-up scam

How do pop-up scams work?

Cybercriminals and deceptive marketers usually use various advertising networks, search engine poisoning techniques, and shady websites to generate traffic to their pop-ups. Users land on their online lures after clicking on fake download buttons, using a torrent website, or simply clicking on an Internet search engine result.

Based on users' location and device information, they are presented with a scam pop-up. Lures presented in such pop-ups range from get-rich-quick schemes to fake virus scans.

How to remove fake pop-ups?

In most cases, pop-up scams do not infect users' devices with malware. If you encountered a scam pop-up, simply closing it should be enough. In some cases scam, pop-ups may be hard to close; in such cases - close your Internet browser and restart it.

In extremely rare cases, you might need to reset your Internet browser. For this, use our instructions explaining how to reset Internet browser settings.

How to prevent fake pop-ups?

To prevent seeing pop-up scams, you should visit only reputable websites. Torrent, Crack, free online movie streaming, YouTube video download, and other websites of similar reputation commonly redirect Internet users to pop-up scams.

To minimize the risk of encountering pop-up scams, you should keep your Internet browsers up-to-date and use reputable anti-malware application. For this purpose, we recommend Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.

What to do if you fell for a pop-up scam?

This depends on the type of scam that you fell for. Most commonly, pop-up scams try to trick users into sending money, giving away personal information, or giving access to one's device.

  • If you sent money to scammers: You should contact your financial institution and explain that you were scammed. If informed promptly, there's a chance to get your money back.
  • If you gave away your personal information: You should change your passwords and enable two-factor authentication in all online services that you use. Visit Federal Trade Commission to report identity theft and get personalized recovery steps.
  • If you let scammers connect to your device: You should scan your computer with reputable anti-malware (we recommend Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows) - cyber criminals could have planted trojans, keyloggers, and other malware, don't use your computer until removing possible threats.
  • Help other Internet users: report Internet scams to Federal Trade Commission.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is a pop-up scam?

A pop-up scam is a fake virus, error, or other alert message designed to trick users into performing certain actions.

What is the purpose of a pop-up scam?

Scammers use pop-up scams to trick users into infecting computers with malware, providing remote access to a computer, paying for fake software/services, providing sensitive information.

Why do I encounter fake pop-ups?

As a rule, pop-up scams are displayed by deceptive websites that users open unintentionally. Users open these pages by clicking on shady ads, visiting other shady websites. In other cases, pages delivering pop-up scams get opened through installed potentially unwanted applications.

Will Combo Cleaner protect me from pop-up scams?

Combo Cleaner is designed to scan every website users visit and detect malicious ones. Pages delivering pop-up scams also fall under this category. Therefore, Combo Cleaner will notify about malicious pages and restrict access to them.

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

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